Saturday, December 24, 2011

Cranberry-Almond Scones

So, I'm playing with new scone recipes for Christmas Eve & I was pretty pleased with the yumminess of my first selection, cranberry-almond. As with the chocolate peanut butter I posted in February, and the oatmeal raisin I've baked several times but never posted, I pulled from several recipes to get the combo I wanted. So, recipe is below - let me know if you try it & how you like it! (Next up - orange scones, per my brother-in-law's request...)

3 cups unbleached flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter
1/2 cup half and half
2 eggs
1 tsp almond extract
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup Craisins (dried cranberries)

Before you begin, place your stick of butter (wrapper on) in the freezer, preheat your oven to 350 degrees, measure your Craisins into a small bowl & cover with warm water to plump, and line a jelly roll pan with parchment paper.

Now, in a large bowl, mix your flour, sugar, baking powder & salt together.

Take your butter out of the freezer, unwrap it, and slice it into thin squares on top of the dry ingredients. Cut the butter into the mix by hand until you have a slightly sandy mix.

I use a 16oz glass measuring cup to mix my wet ingredients, because it makes it easier to pour them onto the dry & you can measure your half and half directly into the cup. Combine half and half, eggs & almond extract and whisk with a fork.

Pour your wet ingredients onto your dry and mix together well. Knead the dough together by hand in the bowl to ensure it is well combined.

Drain the water off of your Craisins and fold them, along with the sliced almonds, into your dough until they are evenly distributed.

Sprinkle some flour (and - heck, it's the holidays - a little sugar) onto your counter surface and seperate the dough in half.

Form one half of the dough into a ball and pat out on the floured surface to form a flat circle. Slice the circle like a pizza into 8 wedges. Place them on the parchment lined pan, alternating direction to fit more across. Do the same with the second half of the dough. (All 16 wedges should fit on the pan - they do not require much space in between.)

Bake the scones for 24 minutes, turning the pan halfway through for more even heating.

Once the scones have cooled, if you want a sweeter scone, make a simple glaze with powdered sugar, a splash of half and half, and a touch of almond extract.

Merry Christmas, y'all!

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